Peter Wai Chan, Production Management, and alumna Terri Huang ’98, business partners and owners of Sunrise Studio, a factory on 38th Street in the Garment District, received a $200,000 matching grant from the Council of Fashion Designers of America and the New York City Economic Development Corporation’s Fashion Manufacturing Initiative (FMI). This is the second time they have won the grant; in 2015, they won $100,000.
Chan, who is also an alumnus, says his firm used the first grant to buy 30 industrial sewing machines and attract new customers. “One of the reasons we could double our grant this time,” he said, “is because we showed evidence to CFDA and NYCEDC that we used the previous grant effectively. In addition, we are one of the few factories that passed the compliance audit, which was required by the CFDA and NYCEDC.”
Sunrise Studio employs 70 people. They create sample-to-medium sized garments in runs of 100 to 1,000 pieces for Calvin Klein, The Row, Urban Zen (Donna Karan) and Alexander Wang, among others.
With the new grant, Chan says, “We will be able to upgrade all other machines to make us more competitive and efficient.” The funds will also help Sunrise service CFDA designers who seek domestic production and sampling resources. The CFDA and NYCEDCF created the grant initiative to encourage manufacturing in New York, so designers could produce locally.
Chan earned three FIT degrees: Production Management: Textiles ’92, Production Management: Apparel: ’89, Fashion Design ’87. Huang studied Fashion Buying and Merchandising ’98.
“I believe Made in the USA has a value to it,” Chan has said. “Manufacturing in China doesn’t reflect the American dream.”